Jan 9, 2019

Not so merry: Mothercare sales slide during Christmas period

Struggling children's goods retailer Mothercare has continued to suffer from declining sales, with no reversal in its fortunes over the crucial Christmas trading period. Sales at its UK stores that have been open for more than a year fell by 11.4 per cent in the 13 weeks to January, compared to the same period a year before. Last year, Mothercare used a company voluntary arrangement - a restructuring deal designed to keep businesses out of insolvency and allow time to negotiate store closures and rent reductions with landlords - to close 60 stores in the UK. The company also raised £30m from shareholders in a rights issue to shore up its balance sheet. The group's UK like-for-like sales also fell by11 per cent in the first half of its latest financial year. The group is on course to have 79 shops by the end of March, compared to 137 last May. Mothercare is also on track to save £19m a year and has completed a sale and leaseback of its UK head office.

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